Every Wednesday afternoon here in Dublin, a tour on 18th century Georgian Architecture, for the wonderful Irish Georgian Society.
For many, Ireland’s capital is synonymous with the Georgian period, c1714-1830, when so many of our great buildings were made. It was an era when the leading citizens, landowners and political classes, felt confident enough to commission magnificent public buildings, vying with London to be seen as a major 18th century European capital.
On our walking tour, we do a little circuit of the southern half of the city centre, looking at some of the best masterpieces of the Dublin Georgian style. There are in fact 2 routes, (Georgian East and Georgian-West) and we alternate these week by week. So on this Wednesday 15th October for example we will go west from the IGS, looking at the splendid old Newcommen Bank, The City Hall/Royal Exchange, the upper yard of Dublin Castle and, very enticingly, and by special, kind arrangement, view both the exterior and the magical, untouched interior (no easily or often accessible,) of Saint Werburgh’s church. This tour also includes views and a discussion of James Gandon’s Four Courts, and of the role of the Wide Streets Commission. The next date fro this particular tour is 2.15 pm Wednesday 15th October. (There will be at least one more,on Wednesday 29th October).
Other Wednesdays we do Georgian East, which takes in the Old Parliament in great details, including the stunning House of Lords, and eighteenth century highlights of Trinity College. The next date fro this particular tour is 2.15pm Wednesday 21st of October and it may be the last of the season.
I’m particularly happy to be doing this tour for the Irish Georgian Society, (IGS). For over 50 years the IGS has been fighting the good fight to protect and preserve these beautiful buildings, through grants, conservation, education, scholarship and advocacy, often in the teeth of stern opposition, and sometimes even downright hostility. I’ve long been a fan of the IGS, so it’s both a pleasure and privilege to be doing this tour in collaboration with them.
We commence our tour, each Wednesday afternoon, just after 2pm, from the front steps of the IGS own headquarters, the lovely City Assembly Rooms at 58, South William St, a splendid old building, and itself a masterpiece of the 18th century Georgian style. We also end the tour back there (at the IGS) and so our final “sight” on the tour will be the battered wonder of the Octagon Room, the first ever purpose-built space for exhibiting art anywhere in Britain or Ireland, (predating both the Royal Academy, and the Royal Hibernian Academy).
All tickets should be booked through the Irish Georgian Society. Tickets can be purchased either in the IGS bookshop in the City Assembly Rooms on 58 South William St, any time office hours prior to the tour. They can also booked in advance through their nice website here- IGS site.
We hope to see you on tour some time.
Samuel Brocas: View of College of Surgeon’s, St Stephens Green, one of the stops on our Wednesday walk.
above & below: James Gandon’s Four Courts, one of the highlights of our walk. (photos by the author)
The same building in a view by Samuel Brocas, looking positively Venetian.
A final view by S. Brocas, featuring the old Parliament builings (by Lovett Pearce, Gandon and others, and (to left) Trinity College, with architecture by Sir William Chambers and others. Both places featuring on the IGS tour.
The website again, to view the tour and/or book advance tickets is IGS
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